Torque: What exactly is it?

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Someone please explain how torque works! :doh:

posted by  TurboLag

Torque, is the twisting force that something is generating.

Check out that site, and it'll be a 5 minutes well spent.

posted by  Godlaus

Did I hear... Torque? :hi:

:orglaugh: :orglaugh:

posted by  DodgeRida67

... so should someone explain the difference between torque and power? :laughing: :laughing: :laughing: :laughing: :laughing: :laughing:

posted by  windsonian

It's a measurement that was obscured in the past, used mainly by engineers who understood such things, but has surfaced in later quarter of the 20th century thanks mainly to internet car forums. It is used to manufacture evidence that highly efficient non V8 engines are lacking in credibility against the big blocks they have surplanted. :wink2:

posted by  Wally

"surplanted" Wonder how many people you've sent to the books looking for that word ? ME for one. :laughing: :laughing: Check the spelling. :doh:I can't spell for crap. :ohcrap:

posted by  lectroid

:laughing: I was thinking usurped and then supplanted and unconsciously came up with a hybrid.

The horsepower torque thing is so yesterday. It's like the 1990's under square long stroke engines give more torque because of bigger pin throws.

posted by  Wally

Think about this, Wally, if your brain can handle it... If torque wasn't important, than those tiny little "highly efficient" engines wouldn't need gear f*cking multiplication to increase torque to the wheels to get them to accellerate like those big blocks... gearing doesn't multiply hp, it multiplies TORQUE.


posted by  ChrisV

Don't start Dodge...

posted by  Satty101

And of course, torque doesn't matter jack if that torque isn't producing any work.

There are 2 ways to make power. RPMs and Torque. Granted, without torque there isn't RPMs, but without enough RPMs, there isn't very much work. Is one better than the other, though? Well, that's up to you to decide. I, however, choose RPMs.

posted by  Godlaus

Fine. Put a 150 hp, 14,000 rpm bike engine in a car. See if it works as well as a 150 hp, 6000 rpm 4 cyl for daily driving.

This is going to be like the hp/liter argument. A Cox .049 engine makes 450-500 hp-liter. And hey, it'll rev to 20k rpm. See how well it works in a street car. great hp/liter, high rpms. What's it lacking?

My RX3 made 150 hp at 9250rpm, and was a bunch of fun, and ran 13s in the 1/4. It also made no useable power below 3500 rpm, had to have 4.30:1 gears and short tires to even accellerate that well, and had lousy driveability for anything but racetrack use, where you could keep the rpms up.

posted by  ChrisV

Torque is how hard you hit the wall, Horse Power is how far you drag it behind you!

posted by  Racer14

You can't have horsepower without torque, and torque without horsepower is worthless. Remember this and you'll understand.

posted by  DodgeRida67

As much as I would like your opinion, I would rather have someone who actually knows something to insult me. You may be very good at parroting articles on the net, but you really don't have the aptitude or knowledge to promulgate a factual piece yourself. You continue to make yourself look naive by resorting to insulting me to add weight to some nonsensical notion that power can't exist without torque. I don't have to prove myself son, I have the runs on the board and don't need to brag about how many cars I paid a mechanic to modify.

Perhaps you can tell us what would happen if you put a motorbike engine rated at 150hp up against a V8 engine also with 150 hp to see which one would toe the other.

posted by  Wally

Actually there is one way to make your car move, RPMs & Torque working togethor at the correct time to give you what you want when you want.

EDIT: And by the way, you can have all the torque in the world, with little horsepower, and not be able to move your car. You can have all the horsepower in the world, and not have much torque, and also not get anywhere.

posted by  DodgeRida67

Are you teasing me? :wink2:

Everytime you burn a piece of wood you are liberating power. If you decide to heat some water with that power and produce steam to turn a flywheel then you can see some torque happening. There is absolutely no reliance for power to have torque present, torque is just a use of power. If we didn't need power we would have perpetual motion.

The source of all that fossil fuel energy is from the sun and as far as I recall the sun's rays aren't little torquey things?

I suggest you guys pick up an automotive book and look up things like BMEP.

posted by  Wally

You seem to have a gift for comparing apples and oranges. Don't try to compare something that is unique to something else that is unique. I'll say it again:

You can't have horsepower without torque, and torque without horsepower is worthless. Remember this and you'll understand.

EDIT: The suns energy is kinetic.

P.S: I have a suggestion for you to. Stop reading a little bit here and a little bit there, and thinking everything works the same way in all situations.

posted by  DodgeRida67

OK if it works for you go for it, but I wouldn't say that amongst a group of engineers if I were you. :wink2:

Edit: Unfortunately torque has some fairly specific conditions, so it isn't a matter of a little bit here and there.

posted by  Wally

Wally, I'm going to tell you straight up. I know you aren't an engineer, and you aren't fooling me into thinking you are.

Before we go any further lets clear things up and then we can talk this out rationally. Let's not turn into flamers here. I'm going to state me theory and you state yours and we'll go from there.

When it comes to getting an automobile down the road, what matters is both horsepower and torque. You can't have horsepower without torque, and torque without horsepower is worthless in an automobile.

All yours...

posted by  DodgeRida67

I take it you have searched the records of the Aust. Inst. of Engineers and couldn't find a listing for "Wally"? :mrgreen: It doesn't make any difference that I am an engineer (read university trained) or a janitor, facts are facts whoever the messenger is.

If you don't believe me about the torque thing, make a call to a reputable automotive R&D company and tell the head engineer that horsepower can't exist without torque. I trust you will post the response. :wink2:

Or you could just ask Chrisv for his googlexpertise, I'm sure he will find some grease monkey's life work somewhere to support an argument. :wink2:

posted by  Wally

Now this wasnt the deal. You were supposed to tell me where you disagree when I say:

I'm waiting.

posted by  DodgeRida67

I thought I already made myself implicitly clear on this. What primarly matters is that there is combustion to produce power, a portion of which, called effective power, drives a piston in a linear (non rotational) direction. After that the power is transfered via rotational bit 'n bobs to the wheels which results in the car moving in a linear (non rotational) manner.

posted by  Wally

... and that is horsepower & torque moving the wheels and the car.

Don't try to leave out horsepower. It's there you're just not understanding it I guess.

posted by  DodgeRida67

OK - you read this and left so I guess you got proven wrong. Let me go ahead and finish proving my case since you aren't here.

Like I said above - there you have horsepower. In your example, do you have RPM? Yes, do you have torque? Yes, so therefor you have horsepower. If the wheels didnt turn: you have no RPM, you have no horsepower, but you do still have torque. That proves what I said: You can't have horsepower without torque (granted, we removed RPM, but either remove RPM or torque and you get the same result, no horsepower. Because, IN THEORY, horsepower = torque X RPM / 5252), and torque without horsepower is worthless (because no work gets done! DUH!).

Engineer my.... :cussing:

posted by  DodgeRida67

Because you decide to make the dependent variable the independent variable in a simple linear equation doesn't mean your argument is correct.

You should know this from basic school maths. For instance y=mx +b; y is the dependent variable. In cars torque is the dependent variable because as you increase the power (call it horsespower if you like) the torque increases. You increase the power by opening the throttle and allowing more combustion, simple as that.

And please don't keep harping about my engineering credentials. I can't defend myself so it is pointless. Or should I start posting kinematic proofs involving higher maths and get the rounds of the table from you for being over complicated?

posted by  Wally

You're trying to tell me that my statement is untrue? "You can't have horsepower without torque, and torque without horsepower is useless." If I was still a flamer, I'd call you stupid.

Show me how torque can move a car and horsepower not be there. Go ahead. I'm waiting.

posted by  DodgeRida67

.... I woulda thought there'd have been some thermal energy in there too, but you're the boss.

and why do you keep saying horsepower ... you're measuring power, the horse bit is a unit that you guys use. That's like saying you can have torque without radians, but no radians without torque.

The reason that you think you can't have "horsepower" without torque is because the "horsepower" that you are trying to measure is derived from torque. How do you measure the "horsepower" of an engine? Torque x speed right? Well obviously you can't get a value of power with no torque if you measure it like this, because your measurement is in how much of the power is used to create torque.

posted by  windsonian

Funny thing... plants use this engery to split water and releases the oxygen from it, which we breathe. It also stores the kinetic engery into potiential engery for the plant cells to use. If I remember correctly, it's in ADP and ATP. ATP being stored energy and ADP being energy released. Nevermind this... but, another interesting fact is that about 75% of the oxygen in the air is from algae doing the above.

That's one way to prove my point... I guess engineer over there is too smart to understand such easy logic. But it is rather more than that in this context. Like I said, you can't have horsepower without torque. Also, torque without horsepower is useless. Why? Because if you just apply torque to the wheels, but they dont move, it's useless torque! (and by the way, applying torque to the wheels and they not moving - thats no horsepower. See! Easy!)

posted by  DodgeRida67

It's simple. If you apply torque to the wheels and they rotate, you have horsepower (and of course torque... you can not have horsepower without it). If they don't rotate, you only have torque alone, which is worthless. Therefor, "Torque without horsepower is worthless in an automobile, and you can't have horsepower without having torque."

posted by  DodgeRida67

You are wasting your time. You should also have pointed out that you can't have Pi without torque either (thank goodness someone found it or else we wouldn't have circles).

posted by  Wally

Well I guess you have shown your true colours there.

You may like to look at linear motors and how they move a car along a track (without any rotational stuff). But of course that can't be because you can't have power without torque, right?

posted by  Wally

is that why pies are round?

posted by  windsonian

DodgeRida67, you should read the previous posts more carefully and try to be less judgmental.

Also, Wally is not trying to be dick he is trying to help you out, but he has an Engineer’s sense of humor so it might be hard follow (although I think it is damn funny ;-).

Anyway a summary of the above posts will tell you the following:

Firstly, stop saying “horsepower and torque”. Torque is an idea and horsepower is an Imperial unit of measure. So for consistently you should either say “power and torque” or if you must “horsepower and pound-force feet”.

Secondly, you do not need torque to have power. Nor, do you need power to have torque at least generally speaking.

Obviously, you are talking about how it to applies to an automotive which is fine. However, you are talking about what is going on at the wheels, and everyone else it talking about what is happing at the engine.

Although, both are related by the drivetrain the same analysis doesn’t really apply to both.

At the wheels torque is sent through the through the drivetrain and powers the wheels. The resulting torque and wheel rotation speed can be equated into some power.

However, at the engine the crankshaft torque comes from the forces driving the pistons. The piston forces come from the combustion process. Therefore, the power of the engine originates from the combustion process within the piston cylinder, and in turn powers the crankshaft which generates torque.

posted by  Regular.Stormy

Hang on, that sounds like rationality!!! :clap: :clap:

posted by  windsonian

Maybe its the ADD, but i'm still a little confused. :screwy: :screwy: :screwy: :screwy: :screwy: :screwy: :banghead:

posted by  TurboLag

If you can't figure it out after that, then you're doomed.

posted by  Godlaus

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